First, a rant.
The holiday season's been good so far. Christmas Day was spent with my parents, siblings, nephews and other relatives and I ventured out with my nephew on Boxing Day to pick up several goodies. I'm not sure what's been in the air the last couple of years around this time of year but things seem to happen to put a damper on the merriment. Last year was the Tsunami in South East Asia, and then just yesterday something much more close to home happened. I literally work just down the street from where the shootings happened, and I'm sure it'll be a topic of conversation when I get back to work in the new year. Strangely, yesterday late afternoon I was contemplating going to downtown Toronto(to Sam The Record Man and HMV which are just across the street from where the shootings happened) to check out some Boxing Day sales but I decided not to go afterall. Divine intervention perhaps, but I'm just glad I didn't go. With gun violence up this year in Toronto(BugMeNot) I can't help but feel just a little antsy every now and then about going downtown. The saddest part of the whole shooting incident was the victims injured/killed, including a teenage girl(who'd been Boxing Day shopping with her mother) who was caught in the crossfire and died as a result. I send my prayers out to the families. Let's hope that 2006 and beyond are safer times because senseless acts of violence like what happened yesterday are really starting to piss me off.
On a different note, my brother's decided he wants to learn guitar, so I've been showing him some of my rudimentary guitar skills(scales, chords, finger position) to get him started. His enthusiasm rubbed off on me because I started to bang out some chords to some familiar indie tunes to entertain myself today. I strummed out the chords and hummed the tune to The Dears' "Don't Lose The Faith", perhaps as a reaction to my feelings towards the subject above. Coincidence perhaps, but nonetheless timely. Like the lyrics express(at least the way I understand them), it's easy to give in, but we all need someone telling us things'll get better.
On a Dears tangent, the band's European record label Bella Union are offering a free 2006 CD sampler(with a minimum order; only until the end of this month) featuring unreleased/demos of tracks from artists on their roster including a demo of a song by The Dears called "There Goes My Outfit". The CD sampler also includes unreleased tracks from new Bella Union signees including Fionn Regan, Mazarin and My Latest Novel.
Also, according to The Dears over at their MySpace page, they've started recording their new album!
Watch a live session of Broken Social Scene performing "Shorelines" as part of BBC - collective's new talent 2006 sessions. [via Live Net Music]
Check out some more 2005 Music Best-Of Lists, this time from Interpretations Diverses(a French blog with three contributors each offering their top 10 lists with mp3 links) and the oh so quiet show(whose list includes an unfamiliar artist or two, notably Mazarin, that I think I'll want to check out).
As I mentioned above, I didn't venture to downtown Toronto yesterday but I made some decent Boxing Day purchases here in the 'burbs including first season DVD boxsets of "Arrested Development" , "The Lone Gunmen" , and "Harsh Realm", $20.00 each at Walmart. I picked up Fiona Apple's "Extraordinary Machine" for $9.99 at Best Buy and the DVD of "21 Grams" for $5.99 at HMV.
Oh, and Fiona Apple should have so totally have made it to Stereogum's top 10 indie rock hottie list. Ok so she's not indie rock but so was the case with alot of the other nominees, so there.